By Becky Somerville
The Richard Ivey School of Business introduced itself as an international school yesterday following the official opening of its new campus in Hong Kong the school's first campus outside Canada.
Funded by a $5 million gift from Ivey alumnus Henry Cheng, the new campus is called the Cheng Yu Tung Management Institute and is located in the Hong Kong Convention and Exhibition Centre.
Western President Paul Davenport said the opening ceremony, which was officiated by Hong Kong's Chief Executive Tung Chee-Hwa, went well and received considerable enthusiasm from the people of Hong Kong.
"Hong Kong has a very competitive economy and they know that a good business education is vital to their success in the future," he said.
Davenport said 100 alumni and friends of Western were in attendance at the ceremony, including Larry Tapp, dean of the Ivey School, London Mayor Dianne Haskett and Dick and Beryl Ivey, who represented the Ivey family.
"Mr. Ivey and I spoke about the magnificent leadership of Henry Cheng who worked with other Ivey alumni to make the opening of the centre possible," Davenport said.
He added the Ivey school had considered several Asian locations but due to tremendous support by Hong Kong alumni, chose to settle in Hong Kong.
"Ivey is now the number one foreign business school in China. We have an outstanding executive MBA program in Hong Kong and we have 16 booklets of case studies that are being distributed to business schools throughout the People's Republic of China in both English and Chinese," Davenport said.
Haskett said the celebration surrounding the Ivey school was wonderful and she was proud to be able to represent the city of London.
"I was amazed to see the kind of impact that this Asian program is going to have not only on Hong Kong but also China and eventually all of Asia," Haskett said.
Haskett said the Cheng Yu Tung Institute will increase Western's international reputation dramatically and considers the world-class facility to be one of Western's biggest undertakings in its history.
Second-year HBA student Kim Dickinson saw the opening of the Hong Kong campus as contributing to the ever-expanding Ivey school.
"It's good cross-cultural exposure for the school and it's consistent with Ivey's international philosophy," she said.